Austin, Texas
April 21, 2009

Honorable Todd Hunter, Chair, House Committee on Judiciary & Civil Jurisprudence
John S. O'Brien, Director, Legislative Budget Board
HB397 by Hartnett (Relating to the regulation of private process servers; providing penalties.), As Introduced

Estimated Two-year Net Impact to General Revenue Related Funds for HB397, As Introduced: a positive impact of $14,000 through the biennium ending August 31, 2011.

This bill would make no appropriation but could provide the legal basis for an appropriation of funds to implement the provisions of the bill.

Fiscal Year Probable Net Positive/(Negative) Impact to General Revenue Related Funds
2010 $7,000
2011 $7,000
2012 $7,000
2013 $7,000
2014 $7,000

Fiscal Year Probable Savings/(Cost) from
General Revenue Fund
Probable Revenue Gain/(Loss) from
General Revenue Fund
Change in Number of State Employees from FY 2009
2010 ($286,941) $293,941 2.5
2011 ($271,915) $278,915 2.5
2012 ($271,849) $278,849 2.5
2013 ($271,601) $278,601 2.5
2014 ($271,439) $278,439 2.5

Fiscal Analysis

The bill would require the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) to license and regulate persons who serve civil process in Texas. The bill would establish qualifications for the license, criminal history record check requirements, practices of licensed process servers, and enforcement by TDLR. The bill would require TDLR to perform criminal history background checks on license applicants and to issue a photo identification card and a unique identification number to eligible licensees.

The bill would take effect September 1, 2009. The license requirement would take effect March 1, 2010.


The Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) estimates there would be 3,400 eligible licensees. Based on information provided by TDLR, it is assumed an additional 2.5 FTEs would be needed to administer the licenses and criminal history background checks, to process complaints and handle casework for investigations. The agency anticipates holding 70 enforcement cases per year, of which 15 will result in administrative hearings. Other costs included in the estimates are for the photo ID cards, the criminal history background checks from DPS and the FBI, increases in Data Center Services, and TexasOnline fees.

The Department of Public Safety (DPS) indicates the new population of licensee criminal history background checks would result in a revenue gain to the General Revenue fund of approximately $7,000 each year. DPS anticipates any additional work resulting from the passage of the bill could be reasonably absorbed within current resources.

This analysis assumes that any increased costs to TDLR, which is statutorily required to generate sufficient revenue to cover its costs of operation, would be offset by an increase in fee generated revenue.


According to TDLR estimates, there would be increased costs for TexasOnline services and Data Center Services.

Local Government Impact

No significant fiscal implication to units of local government is anticipated.

Source Agencies:
405 Department of Public Safety, 452 Department of Licensing and Regulation, 212 Office of Court Administration, Texas Judicial Council
LBB Staff: